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What are the benefits and risks of pork consumption?

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Inuk Lee eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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Pork is a good alternative to beef, because it is lean as well as low in fat (and lower in calories). It also has a number of important nutrients such as B6, B12, thiamine, and riboflavin. Pork also contains high amounts of other nutrients such as iron, magnesium, potassium, zinc and protein. Pork also tastes good to many people. Now the question is: are there risks? Trichinosis is a possible disease that can be contracted. However, to be fair, this disease is still pretty rare in people. Also, cooking the pork very well reduces this problem.

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pohnpei397 eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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The answer to this will, of course, depend on who you ask.  The pork industry, for example, will typically discount the claims made by scientists who argue that red meat is unhealthy.  Since I am not a scientist, I don't know who's right.

The major benefit of pork consumption (or any other meat consumption) is that it provides protein.  This is very important for a healthy diet.  Pork is a relatively good way to get protein because pigs are more easily kept than, for example, cattle.

The risks of pork consumption are largely the same as those of eating meat in general.  Pork can help lead to clogged arteries, heart disease, etc.  In addition, there is also the potential danger of trichinosis if the pork is not properly cooked.

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giorgiana1976 | Student

Unprocessed pork is low in sodium chloride and has a rich protein content.Is also a good source of vitamins and minerals needed for a healthy body: iron, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium and zinc, and a series of group B vitamins such as vitamin B6, B12, nicotinic acid, thiamine, riboflavin.


Pork is a wonderful source of protein. A serving of 100 grams meat  provides about half of the daily requirement of an adult.


- Fat content of pork depends on the part location(breast, etc.),  the "weakest" meat being the one of the 6g fat content per 100g of meat;

- Pork contains more unsaturated fat than saturated fat;

- Pork contains conjugated linoleic acid, considered by experts as a good ally of the body against cancer or cardiovascular disease;


- Pork is a good source of iron for the body and is recommended to be inserted in the diet, if feriprive anemia (with iron deficiency);

- A 100-gram portion of pork provides 15% of the daily iron;


- By consuming 100 grams of pork ensure 30% of the daily demand for zinc;

- According to studies, people who exclude meat from your diet of any type, face shortage of zinc amounts;

- Iron, zinc and vitamin D contained in red meat is better absorbed by the body, unlike other foods that contain them;

Risks to health

Uncooked, pork can be the carriers of parasites or dormant diseases . Served after removal of the parts full of fat and cooked without being fried in oil, pork fat is low, on the opposite,consumption of parts full of fat  is a risk factor for cholesterol because of rich content saturated fat.

Pigs have the reputation for being dirty animals,  prone to infections caused by parasites - Trichinella. Trichinella is a tiny worm that lives in muscle and can cause disease - in humans, by consumption of pork - a parasitic disease called Trichinellosis - the main risk of consumption of pork.